The Personal Blog of Lennart Koopmann _

Audio/Sound Output in IntelliJ IDEA on Linux with PulseAudio

A quick thing I just stumbled upon: Want to play a sound from a Java program using, for example, the javax.sound APIs or the MidiSystem Synthesizer but, when running from within IntelliJ IDEA, you can't hear a sound and see no exceptions?

First, try to package your project to create a .jar file and execute it from a terminal. In my case, the same program that would not play a sound when executed from within IDEA, flawlessly played the sound when executed from within a terminal using java -jar.

After a lot of Googling, I found out that IntelliJ IDEA can't connect to PulseAudio on Linux (at least Ubuntu 20.04 in my case) until you set the following environment variable:


You can set the variable in a run configuration like this:

I hope this saves someone else a lot of headaches.